District pledges 'severe disciplinary actions' against students arrested

CHEROKEE COUNTY, Ga. — Students and parents in the Cherokee County School District say they're at a loss for words after two students were arrested on attempted murder charges.

The students -- Alfred Dupree and Victoria McCurley -- allegedly plotted an attack at the school. They are jailed in Cherokee County.

Students Channel 2 Investigative Reporter Aaron Diamant talked to on Wednesday said they were in disbelief, confused and still trying to wrap their heads around what happened.

“Obviously, it could have been terrible. It could have been very bad if they didn’t get on top of it in time, but they did," student Sam Jackson told Diamant.

“Out of all the schools, I wouldn’t’ think that Etowah would be a school, you know, trying to do something like that,” student Jacob Branyon said.

The school district sent a letter home to parents on Wednesday outlining what happened and plans for the future.

Scroll down and you can read the entire letter below.

Dear Parents,

On behalf of the Superintendent, this message is in response to today’s arrest of two of our students that is understandably generating significant media attention.

Two Etowah High School students were arrested by the Cherokee Sheriff’s Office on very serious charges related to alleged plans to harm students and staff at their school.

We will not tolerate violence -- or threats of violence -- at any our schools. This stand will be reflected in the severe administrative disciplinary actions we will take against these students.

Our community is strongest when we work together to keep all of us -- especially our children -- safe. We deeply appreciate the community member who reported information to the Woodstock Police Department tip line that ultimately led to these arrests by the Cherokee Sheriff’s Office.

Our School District Police Department and administrative staff assisted with the investigation in a continuation of our longtime partnership with the Sheriff’s Office to maintain a safe and secure environment for our students and employees.

We understand your concerns and why you want more information, but we will continue to defer to the Sheriff’s Office to release details when, and if, appropriate, in order to protect the integrity of the ongoing investigation.

We take all threats to the safety and security of our students and employees very seriously.  Anyone with information about threats is asked to immediately report it to police. CCSD School Police has a dedicated hotline for students and parents to use any time: 770-720-4061.

Barbara P. Jacoby

Chief Communications Officer

Cherokee County School District

This is a story Channel 2 Action News will continue to follow. The teens are expected to make their first court appearance Thursday morning. WATCH Channel 2 Action News for complete coverage.